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Jennifer Soltis receives thesis research travel grant

Jennifer Soltis, a fourth-year graduate student working with Professor Lee Penn, has received a 2013-14 Thesis Research Travel Grant from the Graduate School Fellowship Office.

Jennifer is using this grant to travel to Lawrence Berkeley National Lab to do ultrafast pump-probe spectroscopy with Adam Schwartzberg at the Molecular Foundry and Ben Gilbert at the Berkeley Nanogeoscience Center.

This work uses the foundry's Helios and Eos ultrafast spectrometers to probe electron transport in iron oxide nanoparticles. Iron oxides are common worldwide and play an important role in biogeochemical cycles because they provide active sites for oxidation-reduction reactions. Though the reactions themselves are well-known, the complex mechanism of electron transport during these reactions are not yet well-understood.

Criteria for this award included the cohesiveness of the study or research plan, and the clarity with which it is conveyed to the non-specialist; the direct impact that travel will have on the research; the strength of the overall academic record; the soundness of the budget request; the timeliness of progress toward the degree; and the strength of the letters of recommendation.

Jennifer was congratulated for her impressive academic credentials and her strong research proposal. The $1,569 grant that Jennifer received will be used to offset flight, hotel, and field work expenses.